On the heels of a Seattle Times report that hinted the Mariners and starter Mike Leake were “ready to be done with” each other, the veteran righty gave some insight on his professional priorities vis-a-vis the trade deadline in an appearance on today’s broadcast of MLB Network Radio’s “Home Plate” radio show (link).
“I want to win,” said Leake, before adding, “I’m not at liberty to sit around and wait on a non-winning team.” True to that earlier Times report, which characterized league-wide interest in the pitcher as “minimal,” Leake admitted that he hasn’t to this point been presented with any trade proposals from the Mariners front office. Leake, who possesses a no-trade clause as part of the five-year, $80MM deal he signed with the Cardinals prior to the 2016 campaign, would need to approve any move to an acquiring club, but it remains to be seen whether anyone wants a stake in the well-compensated righty. Leake is still owed approximately $25.5MM before his contract terminates at the conclusion of the 2020 season, with the Cardinals still responsible for nearly $6.5MM of that total. He has a 4.27 ERA across 2o starts on the year (4.80 FIP).
More doings from around the West…
- In a piece for AZCentral.com, Nick Piecoro paints a picture of two young Diamondbacks hurlers heading in opposite directions (link). While rookie Alex Young has begun to earn the trust of manager Torey Lovullo in a starting role, fellow big league neophyte Taylor Clarke has begun to produce some organizational hand-wringing after a string of shoddy appearances. After being called up in late June to fill the club’s “fifth starter” role, Young has responded by throwing 18.2 nearly untarnished innings (0.96 ERA). Though never a widely lauded prospect, the 25-year-old is turning heads with this introductory performance. “I think every year there’s going to be certain surprises and Alex Young has definitely fit in that criteria right now,” Lovullo said. Clarke, meanwhile, owns an 8.20 ERA over his last eight starts, and Lovullo conceded to Piecoro that his performance is an “obvious concern” for the club.
- In other news concerning a concerned manager, the Rangers are troubled by the recent slump of Nomar Mazara–and skipper Chris Woodward has been cutting his playing time, as Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News points out (link). Though Woodward largely maintained that Mazara will still be a starter for the team moving forward, Saturday marked Mazara’s third time on the bench in eight post-break Texas games. Never an elite defender, Mazara holds a career-worst 83 wRC+ on the year and is walking at a 6.0% rate that also represents a personal low point. With just eight hits in his last 57 at-bats, it is unclear how Woodward will continue to divide outfield playing time between Mazara and a rejuvenated Danny Santana. Of Mazara’s performance, Woodward allowed only that, “We want to see the results be a little bit higher.”
I think it’s time the Rangers cut ties with Mazara and allow Calhoun the opportunity to prove his worth
I think a minor league stint is in order. At least they haven’t signed Nomar like they did Odor..
Arbitration time is either after this season or next – it’s time to move the needle..
I like how Woodward doesn’t shy away from these matters and addresses the subject.
ya I think it is time to send him down and trade hunter pence so u can call him Calhoun and Scott heineman
508 career big league games and a career 1.0 WAR? Unacceptable, this guy stinks. Send him down or trade him.
Mazara is only 24 years old. I don’t think we should cut ties with him. Maybe cut his playing time but don’t just release the guy. He could end up breaking out over the next year or 2 and being a very solid player. He’s not too far off from being able to be a .270/.350/.450 30 hr 100 rbi guy. He might be better suited at DH once choo and pence are gone.
So is Leake planning on retiring if he doesn’t get traded?
I am sure he is not.
I know it won’t happen, but he basically said he’s not going to use his time to pitch for a losing team. Or at least that’s how I’m interpreting it.
My guess is that he is doing this to make it abundantly clear to contending teams that he is more than willing to accept a trade regardless of his full no trade clause. Some teams don’t even bother wasting their time to trade for a player with that in their contract because they already assume he won’t accept. Maybe someone will go after him. Didn’t he take a no-hitter into the 9th a night or two ago on less than 80 pitches?
Yeah, he had a perfecto with less than 80 pitches in the 9th on Friday. And of course a former Mariner prospect broke it up. But I think that he has already made it obvious that he’ll accept a trade through his previous comments. He must be just really trying to let Dipoto know that he wants out.
Yeah. What I meant is that in this late July atmosphere an outing like that may make a team or two more interested in acquiring him. I have recently read that there is very limited interest in his services but maybe that outing could have slightly changed things.
No .Just some more Shoplifting .
I’ve never actually heard the story of his shoplifting. What happened lol?
I’m sure Seattle would be willing to let him void his contract. The thing is he wants to keep the oversized contract…..and no one who is winning wants him at that price. So he needs to decide if he wants the money or to win
Every thing you wrote is 100% illegal in real life. It’s illegal for the mariners to void that contract.
WE get it, you hate players making money and would rather billionaires steal more money from the players, “oversized contract” is suuuuch a lie, come on this narrative is so boring please stop.
Leake controls his landing spot via the No Trade and is subtly telling Mariners Management you better send me to a spot I can live with. Angels is probably high on his list
Why the hell would the angels be high on his list? He said he wants to win not win half the time. A step up from the Mariners but c’mon, the angels are no where near the top of his list.
Contenders aren’t really at liberty to make a trade for an expensive 5th starter.
Dipoto has shown a strong willingness to eat large portions of bad contracts. We’re still paying for Encarnacion, Cano, Bruce, and plenty others even though they’re wearing other uniforms.
Hahaha very very good.
My question is: If Leake signed a full no trade clause with the Cardinals and only wants to play for contending teams… Why did he ever accept a trade from the Cardinals to the Mariners? I know the Cards aren’t in top form right now but over the last decade+ has anyone ever thought of the Mariners of a better contending team than the Cards? I mean the Cards have relatively recent WS appearances on top of leading the NL in World Championships. The Cards are like the Yankees of the National League. The Mariners are routinely terrible and I doubt they have ever even been to a World Series. I know they have never won a World Series. Haven’t the Cards won around 20 championships or so? If my concern was playing for a contender and I had years left on my contract in addition to a full no trade clause that guaranteed I could decide whether I was willing to leave the Cards to play for another team, I would never accept a trade to the Mariners.
While what you said is true, the Mariners were not bad from 2014-2018. 2015 was an outlier where Jack Z just continued to be terrible and was finally fired.
Jack Z is phenomenal on the Pirates radio pre and post game show, FWIW.
Have to disagree FWJBT, Jack Z started out really well but has devolved into Kevin Orie. He doesn’t take a stand or really have an opinion on ANYTHING. The other day he actually started his response to a question “It doesn’t matter what I think…”. Umm, then why are you on per&post talkin baseball?
Just cause the Mariners haven’t made the playoffs in a record number of years doesn’t mean they haven’t been contenders. That particular year there was high hopes and expectations. You are an absolute clown to comment the way you did without doing your homework. I think Leake is a stud and hope he finds a good team to compete with.
On what planet can you be a contender when you have not made the playoffs in 18 years? The Mariners have the longest playoff drought in all of team sports. Over the past five seasons, the Mariners have averaged 83.2 wins which I’d say is about average. Over the past ten seasons, that number drops to 77..5 which is below average. Contenders? I don’t think so. Mike Leake a stud? You must be a friend or relative of his, if not you need to be drug tested immediately.
On the planet where they almost made the playoffs last year? Even in 2017, when Leake was traded to Seattle, there was only a 5 game difference between the Mariners and Cardinals.
The Mariners have a crazy long playoff drought, no doubt. But they’ve come within shouting distance to making the playoffs almost a dozen times over that stretch.
You’re the guy who says only batting average and ERA matters, aren’t you, Bay Area? In 2015 we brought it down to the very last game of the season. If Oakland or the angels lost (I think Oakland) then we would have gotten the one game playoff. That is a contender. Last year having a top 4 record in the majors for more than half the season is being a contender. This is the first year since like 2013 or 14 that they’re absolutely not competing. You can average anything out you like if you take a long enough approach or don’t read in between the lines. There’s so much more than you hearing on espn if the mariners were contenders or not. You don’t hear that about small market teams
The cardinals are in no way the Yankees of the national league. Small market team vs much smaller. What they’ve been able to do is amazing, what the Yankees do is buy buy buy. Or trade trade trade. Always retooling. They got lucky and had a good farm system for a few years because of one bad season they had. Minus the World Series wins, it would be closer to say the dodgers are closer to the “Yankees of the national league”
Would a Matt Boyd-Nomar Mazara trade work in any capacity? Asking for a friend.
I think u would have to add hans crouse and few more players
laugh in your friends face
“I’m not at liberty to sit around and wait on a non-winning team.”
What makes him more special than players on: Balt, Tor, Cinn, Pitt, Chisox, or any other losing team; that have a desire to be on a winner?
he has a microphone in front of him and a few more years of major league experience.
EXACTLY. He was asked a question and answered it.
If Leake doesn’t want to play for a losing team, why wouldn’t he pitch his way into a trade? He sucks and Seattle couldn’t move that contract even if they absorb half of it in a trade for a bag of balls! Quit whining and play like a $80mil player or just continue your spiral into oblivion where no one cares. Mike Leake screwed himself and the Mariners by being a no caring ***hole and now he can wear that curse. Goodbye.
I doubt that he thinks he screwed himself when he looks at his bank account
Mike Leake has posted 8.8 fWAR, valued at $70.4 million, just over three-and-a-half years into his five-year, $80 million contract:
The St. Louis Cardinals reportedly are paying the Seattle Mariners nearly $6.5 million of the contract’s balance.
Since the 2016 start of the contract, Leake ranks 37th among all pitchers in fWAR:
With bullpens imploding from overwork, an innings-eater such as Mike Leake might be undervalued even with his contract.
Ding ding ding
In his down year this season, Mike Leake ranks 63rd among all pitchers with 1.1 fWAR:
Leake is in the company of other pitchers with free agent contracts and these 2019 salaries:
Rick Porcello 1.2 fWAR, $21.2 million
J.A. Happ 1.1 fWAR, $17 million
Jake Arrieta 0.8 fWAR, $25 million
Jeff Samardzija 0.8 fWAR, $19.8 million
Yu Darvish 0.7 fWAR, $20 million
Appling, Santo, Torre, Easley, Wells, Felix, DiPoto, Dunn………
Didnt hear whining about being on losing teams from theses guys.
Leake to NYY for Ellsbury and a ptbnl
And I thought the days of Yankee fans dumping Ellsbury in Seattle were over.
Ellsbury is expensive and broken. Leake is an expensive back of the rotation starter who is not.
I would guess no one going to trade for Ellsbury.
Yankees fans. You are never. NEVER. EVER. Trading Ellsbury. For anything. Ever. Stop wasting everyones time by bringing him up. He’s YOUR problem until you cut him.
Sucks to suck leak. A contender doesn’t want an over payed back end starter. Leak seems to think he’s more then he is or ever was.
Poor guy thinks he has a must trade clause.
I really like Josh Harrison, but this Leake story reminds me of last year in spring training when he asked the Pirates for a trade saying it was better for him to play for a contender.
No one wanted to trade for him, even at the deadline, then he gets non tendered and the best deal he can find is for $2 million on a rebuilding team, hasn’t even earned that and next year will be looking at Japan or a minor league invite.
Below average players who think they should be able to demand to be inserted into the lineup of a contender because….they want it?….is a bizarre phenomena.
It’s a great point. You need to work your way up to that point. Leake has been lucky to be with the Cardinals and Mariners. It might not be getting better for him though I think a winning club might take him on as a 4th SP.
Who are you to decide if players “earn” their contract or not? Production and post-arb salaries are MUTUALLY EXCLUSIVE THINGS.
Where were you when Harrison was putting up a 5+ WAR season while making minimum wage? Exactly. Stop caring about player salaries in regards to current production, its an “evening out” scenario, not a “pay then play well” one.
“I’m not at liberty….”
Glad Leake is well compensated. Hate to see him have to resort stealing T-shirts or something.
Send to Detroit with Odor for Boyd.
Boyd for Merrifield is better.
Leake has 2 WAR this year and Seattle owed $11MM next year (the other $4MM is covered by STL). Someone will want Leake as long as the Mariners eat some dough, just like they did with Jay Bruce.
You want to win, Mike? Maybe you should pitch better.
Weird that you said that after he nearly threw a perfect game and ended up with a 1-hit shutout.